Offutt Air Force Base is one of six sites being considered as the future headquarters of the United States Space Command, the Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett announced Thursday.
Barrett signed a document selecting Offutt along with bases in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Cape Canaveral, Florida; Colorado Springs, Colorado; Huntsville, Alabama; and Port San Antonio, Texas; according to an Air Force news release.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity for Nebraska,” said Sen. Deb Fischer, a Republican who serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee. “I think we have a lot of what they’re looking for.”
Fischer said the Air Force has tentative plans to build a new headquarters and locate 1,400 people at the site that’s selected. She said Air Force officials told her to expect a final decision in January.
U.S. Space Command was reactivated Aug. 29, 2019, as a unified combatant command, with full responsibility for fighting wars in space. It assumed duties previously carried out under the direction of U.S. Strategic Command, also based at Offutt.
“Space Command would be a natural complement to Offutt’s existing mission — to protect U.S. military assets, dominate the battlespace, and support our heroic war fighters,” said Rep. Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., in a statement.
“It is premature to know if Offutt will be ultimately chosen,” added Fortenberry, whose district includes the base, “but the consideration alone shows how important Offutt now is to our nation and the world.”